Treasuries Move To The Downside Following Fed Announcement

After ending the previous session roughly flat, treasuries moved to the downside over the course of the trading day on Thursday.

Bond prices initially showed a lack of direction before sliding firmly into negative territory. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, rose by 2.1 basis points to 3.234 percent.

With the moderate increase on the day, the ten-year yield ended the session at its highest closing level in well over nine years.

The weakness among treasuries came after the Federal Reserve announced its widely anticipated decision to leave interest rates unchanged.

Citing realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Fed decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 2 to 2.25 percent.

The Fed’s accompanying statement noted a slowdown in the pace of growth in business investment, but the central bank reiterated further gradual increases in interest rates remain appropriate.

“Overall, the statement suggests that the Fed is still on track to continue raising interest rates gradually, with the next hike coming at its December meeting,” said Michael Pearce, Senior U.S. Economist at Capital Economics. “We anticipate that will be followed by two rate hikes in the first half of 2019.”

He added, “By the middle of next year, however, we expect economic growth to slow below its potential pace, which would force the Fed to the sidelines.”

CME Group’s FedWatch tool currently indicates a more than 70 percent change the Fed will raise rates by a quarter point following a two-day meeting scheduled for December 18th and 19th.

Trading on Friday may continue to be impacted by reaction to the Fed announcement along with a preliminary report on consumer sentiment in November.

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